Someone bring up participant modeling as a form of exposure therapy to treat the specific phobias. When I was reading regarding this in the text, I felt that this could be a really wonderful form of treatment with a very severe case of specific phobia. Some people with a severe phobia might not be able to handle direct contact with their feared stimuli, so I can see how observing their therapist's interactions with the stimuli could be really helpful. I think it would make the environment even safer and the possibility of success in treatment even higher. That being said, I think it would be necessary for the client to eventually move into direct contact with their feared stimuli, but I can see how this approach would be great at the starting of treatment.
This form of participant modeling can certainly have a stronger effect on phobias when employing desensitization. This approach has been used much successfully with children. Do you suppose that they are more susceptible to modeling effects?